Former City Councilman Tom Ognibene earlier this year thought he’d never again have the opportunity to run for public office. His latest chance ran out Tuesday night when Chautauqua County Executive Greg Edwards defeated him by a slim 4 percent margin in the Republican lieutenant governor primary.
Edwards was picked by former Rep. Rick Lazio, who was trounced by Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino in the GOP gubernatorial primary. Paladino opted for Ognibene as his lieutenant after a round of interviews in the spring.
“How the chips fall, the chips fall,” Ognibene told the Chronicle late Tuesday night from his Middle Village home. “The important thing here is not lieutenant governor, but that we support Carl Paladino. He has the appropriate message for these times.” Ognibene asserted that Edwards won because “he had the upstate vote.”
Paladino indicated Wednesday to the Albany Times Union that he will run with Edwards on the ticket.
It was unclear whether Ognibene, an attorney, will seek elective office in the future. But the prognosticator in him thinks at least one thing is certain.
“Carl Paladino will be the next governor of the state of New York,” he said.
— Michael Cusenza